The Trayhurns were well known in Thornbury as being a family of butchers in the 20th Century.  The surname is found in Thornbury parish records as far back as the late sixteenth century, although the spelling varied greatly.

In the late 18th and 19th Centuries, the Trayhurns in Thornbury were primarily tailors.  During that period the surname had become, Trayhern, Trayherne, Trayhurn or Trayhurne.  We have simplified our summary of the family history by using the name of Trayhurn.

The first member of the member known to be a tailor was William Trayhurn baptised in Thornbury on 17th July 1737.  He was the son of Isaac Trayhurn’s whose occupation we do not know and his wife, Mary.

Isaac and Mary Trayhurn – according to his age at death Isaac was born about 1699.  He married Mary Leach in Thornbury on 7th October 1733.  They may have lived at Oldbury because there is record of a Mary’s death on 22nd October 1764 when she was living at Oldbury. Isaac was buried on 18th August 1787 aged 88.  They were both buried at Thornbury parish church.

William and Hester Trayhurn – William was baptised in Thornbury on 17th July 1737.  He married Hester (also known as Esther) Burrows in Thornbury on 27th May 1756 and they went on to have at least seven children: their first Ann was baptised on 11th November 1757.  Hester was born on 14th August 1760 and William born on 29th March 1762.  These two were baptised on 24th July 1771 along with Betty baptised who died the next day.  Also baptised that day was a son, Thomas, born on 30th May 1765.  On 14th October 1773 their son John was born.  When he was baptised on 29th October 1773 it was noted on the record that he was ‘very ill’.  We assume that he was not expected to survive, but the little lad did.  Their youngest child was Luke born on 5th June 1778.  He was baptised on 28th June 1778.  William and Hester may have had an earlier child named Thomas, but we are confused by the dates shown on the Scribes Alcove website as they seem to overlap the dates for the Thomas mentioned above.  We feel it likely that this Thomas may have died young because, unlike three of his older siblings who were baptised in 1771, he was baptised almost immediately after his birth.

We are fortunate that the Mayors Accounts books show where William and his family were living as from 1786 onwards.  William was paying rent on the house now known as 58 High Street.  This was one of several properties which had been given to the Mayor so that he could use the rental income to aid the poor people in the town.  William was initially paying a rent of £3 10s 0d per annum, but in 1804 this was increased to £4 4s 0d.  William died aged 71 and was buried on 2nd March 1809.  The Mayors Accounts show that Hester took over the property but she was to die shortly after and was buried on 26th May 1809 aged 72.  Their son, John (see below), took over the tenancy of this property.

Of William and Hester’s children, we know:

  • William – born in Thornbury on 29th March 1762 and baptised on 24th July 1771.  He married Elizabeth Everitt in Thornbury on 10th April 1787.  It doesn’t appear that they had any children.  We suspect William and Elizabeth lived in a house later known as 53 St Mary Street because he is shown as having lived there previously when the owner John Williams wrote his last will in 1804.  When William died aged 46 it was noted that he was also a tailor like his father.  He was buried on 26th January 1808.  Elizabeth may have died aged 50 as there is a record of a burial on 11th December 1814.
  • Thomas – born on 30th May 1765 and baptised on 24th July 1771.  Thomas became a tailor.  He married twice and had a large family.  Thomas lived in Thornbury until his death at the age of 82.  Several of his sons also became tailors and continued living in Thornbury.  Click here to read more
  • John Trayhurn – born in Thornbury on 14th October 1773 and baptised on 29th October 1773.  We haven’t been able to trace John’s marriage to Ann, nor her maiden name.  They had at least 10 children, mostly girls: Elizabeth born on 2nd October 1800 and baptised on 26th October 1800, Martha born on 22nd June 1798 and baptised on 30th September 1798, Ann born on 29th September 1803 and baptised on 11th December 1803, Brice born on 12th March 1806 and baptised on 28th May 1806 (who was buried aged 17 on 4th November 1823), Eliza born on 29th September 1808 and baptised on 27th November 1808, Hannah born on 22nd February 1811 and baptised on 26th May 1811, Charlotte baptised on 20th March 1814 and Hester baptised on 28th October 1814.  The baptism records show that John was also a tailor like his father and brothers.
     John and Ann took over the tenancy of his parents house at 58 High Street following the death of his mother in 1809.  Ann was buried on 2nd January 1815 aged 40.  John continued living in the house until 1823.  In 1822 the Mayor had increased John’s rent to £8 per annum which John agreed to, but by 1823 he had fallen in arrears.  He owed £10 and was served with notice to quit.  John was buried on 25th May 1828 aged 55.  Although we haven’t traced his birth or baptism, we think that John and Ann also had a son called John who was born about 1795.  Click here to read about John jnr
  • Luke – born in Thornbury on 5th June 1778 and baptised on 28th June 1778.  He married Ann Barton on 14th June 1804 and they had one child, George, born on 29th March 1809 and baptised on 3rd May 1809.  Luke was noted to be a tailor on the baptism record.  The 1809 Rent Roll shows that Luke had become the owner of 44 High Street which then seemed to comprise two properties.  We don’t know when he acquired them from George Rolph, but Luke had sold them to Amelia Rolph by the time she wrote her will in 1822.  Ann died and was buried on 2nd January 1815 aged 40.  Luke married again – his second wife was Alice Bowden whom he married in St Phillips and St Judes Church, Bristol on 21st August 1817.  Luke and Alice had a daughter, Alice, baptised in Thornbury on 4th October 1818.  In 1827 Luke and Alice moved to live at 15 St Mary Street, a house owned by the Corporation.  Luke was buried on 2nd March 1837 aged 58.  Click here to read more about Alice